An insulating profect going right!
Last Post 02/12/2020 11:10 PM by 79 pmooney. 7 Replies.
Author Messages
79pmooney

Posts:2262

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02/11/2020 12:35 AM
I have been upping the insulation in my house piece by piece over the past 20 years. Blown in fiberglass in the attic first, huge change! Batt insulation under the floor (crawl space). Not huge but after I could pad around the tile hall in slippers. My 4th room redo, I knocked out wall for a window and saw the R8 batt. Pulled all the outside wall drywall off and went 3" of rigid foam (plus modern windows). Wow! Did the same upstairs and beefed up the roof insulation prior to re-roofing. Another wow!, especially in terms of that room.

That leaves the 4 downstairs bedrooms. Sadly I didn't do the walls when I did the my room. Didn't know yet. That room is the furthest from the furnace and has the most outside wall. As I improve the rest of the house, the furnace spends more and more time napping. My room gets colder and colder.

Well, the 4th room is now unoccupied so it is its turn. It was the warmest room in the house. Closest to the furnace and has its own duct. Pulled off the drywall and R6 batt. It now has just 1" of R5 foam, fitted tight. I blocked the heat duct with a wad of upholstery foam. Late this afternoon I opened the windows and did an air cleaning of the entire house (with the heat shut down0. Closed the windows and left for several hours, forgetting to turn the heat back on. Sitting here at my study just now, I realized it was getting a little cool and "oh yeah! I forgot the heat! (It's about 38F outside. Went to the thermostat. 67F in the hall with no heat for 5 hours! Wow!

To achieve the same effect before the furnace would have kicked on for probably 5 cycles. That room was not a lot colder with no heat than it was before with lots. And that's with just one layer of R5 foam. Tight fitted riigid foam is SO much warmer than standard stapled in batt. Yes, radically more work to fit. But you only do it once.

Next summer, I'll have cellulose blown into the remaining walls and call it good. If and when i do major work in those rooms. I'll pull the drywall and do it right.

I still heat with gas and a little electricity. But despite price increases I pay far less than I did 20 years ago. And the house is much more comfortable (except my bedroom ).

Ben
huckleberry

Posts:556

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02/11/2020 09:50 AM
The last two houses I built and one remodeled all had the spray in expanding foam. After I did it the first time, I was so amazed that I couldn't do it any other way after that. You could heat the house with a blow dryer ; )

Other benefits were that it added to the structural stability of the house, it sealed off noise incredibly, and blocked off nearly any entrance for dust and dirt.

I guess I could also use it to stop myself from seeing so much of the PNW rain - just spray it in my eyes.
Orange Crush

Posts:2707

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02/11/2020 10:55 AM

Posted By 79 pmooney on 02/11/2020 12:35 AM
As I improve the rest of the house, the furnace spends more and more time napping. My room gets colder and colder.




You've basically by accident created a beer/wine cellar to keep the beverages cool.

And in wartime, this is where you can store your potato stash and keep it from going bad prematurely.
79pmooney

Posts:2262

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02/11/2020 12:13 PM
OC, I store myself there so I don't go bad prematurely. (But my next purchase will be a down comforter.)

Huck, my sensitivity to many chemicals, common and otherwise has been such a governing force in my life that I don't dare blow a two part foam into my bedroom walls or any other place I spend much time. Now I did do a life-changing "liver cleansing" several years ago and am far less sensitive, but still, this current experience is ~30 months old. The hell lasted 30 years. I"m still very gun shy.

And yes, blown in foam would have all the thermal effect of my fitted sheets for far less work and would stiffen the structure a lot (think balsa or foam core in a fiberglass laminate) but my knowledge of that laminate is way too intimate! (I built ~50 fiberglass boats as a primary laminator. Hence my sensitivities.)

Ben
huckleberry

Posts:556

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02/12/2020 12:04 PM
Ben -

They make a soybean-based foam that is supposed to be very good - not sure if it is widely available or how much more costly. I will probably look into it for my next build.
79pmooney

Posts:2262

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02/12/2020 03:56 PM
I'll look into that for the remaining (and otherwise finished) rooms. At this pont I have one more sheet of 2" to fit on the room I'm on now.

Thanks
longslowdistance

Posts:1966

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02/12/2020 07:56 PM
Not knowing much here. Just observing after been around the track a few times that I am certain there is no free lunch.

2 x 6 rather than 2 x 4 studs on exterior walls is a no brainer if building new regardless of wherever you are building.

Each insulation material has plusses and minuses. If you can keep insulation dry cellulose is very appealing, e.g. in sunny dry AZ. But for Ben in the PNW, maybe not.
79pmooney

Posts:2262

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02/12/2020 11:10 PM
Thanks lsd. My house has bungalow style roofing and brand new roof with 30" overhangs and I just painted the previously stained siding with two layers of the excellent Home Depot paint by brush and roller. (Next to best Behr. Every brush and rolller stroke was mine). No evidence of water inside anywhere above the crawl space bottom. Big, big change in feel and smell inside since that paint. Fewer bugs too.

The fun part of doing two coats - you get to have exactly the right color. I bought a gallon of what I thought I wanted - warm, reddish brown. Painted two adjacent walls, different sides of the house. Came home a few days later and saw the full sun on the paint. Way too red! Two or three tries, gallons and adjacent walls later, a fully custom brown that was far from my original idea passed the visual test. For the next week or so the house looked odd with the new and 6 or 8 previous panels in different browns. But once it was all the newest, wow! And I wouldn't have hit that color in a million years with one coat.

Ben


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